August 9 2021, 15:30 pm

Canadian Intelligence Service Publishes Foreign Interference Threats Report

The Cana­di­an Secu­ri­ty Intel­li­gence Ser­vice (CSIS), Canada’s pri­ma­ry intel­li­gence ser­vice, has pub­lished a report on for­eign inter­fer­ence threats to Canada’s demo­c­ra­t­ic process, out­lin­ing the tar­gets and tech­niques for­eign states use to con­duct for­eign inter­fer­ence. Accord­ing to the CSIS report:

July 2021 Activ­i­ties with­in or relat­ing to Cana­da that are detri­men­tal to the inter­ests of Cana­da and are clan­des­tine or decep­tive, or involve a threat to any per­son, con­sti­tute for­eign inter­fer­ence. Exam­ples of for­eign inter­fer­ence include attempts to covert­ly influ­ence, intim­i­date, manip­u­late, inter­fere, cor­rupt or dis­cred­it indi­vid­u­als, orga­ni­za­tions and gov­ern­ments to fur­ther the inter­ests of a for­eign state. […] For­eign states and their prox­ies use a range of com­mon tech­niques to fur­ther their objec­tives. This includes human intel­li­gence oper­a­tions, lever­ag­ing state-spon­sored or com­mu­ni­ty media, sophis­ti­cat­ed cyber tools, and social media. While these tech­niques are var­ied and can be dif­fi­cult to detect, there are indi­ca­tors that can help increase indi­vid­ual aware­ness of these threats to avoid becom­ing a target.

Read the full report here.

Accord­ing to the report, the main tar­gets of for­eign inter­fer­ence in Cana­da are the Cana­di­an pub­lic and vot­ers, elect­ed offi­cials, donors, inter­est groups and com­mu­ni­ty orga­ni­za­tions, and media. Tech­niques used by for­eign actors include elic­i­ta­tion, cul­ti­va­tion, coer­cion, illic­it financ­ing, cyber attacks, dis­in­for­ma­tion, and espi­onage. How­ev­er, the report curi­ous­ly fails to name any spe­cif­ic for­eign actors con­duct­ing for­eign inter­fer­ence oper­a­tions in Canada.

Past GIOR cov­er­age of Cana­da has included:

  • In June, we rec­om­mend­ed a report exam­in­ing China’s for­eign influ­ence oper­a­tions in Canada.
  • In Novem­ber, we report­ed on Canada’s Nation­al Cyber Threat Assess­ment, which con­clud­ed that the threat to Cana­di­ans posed by for­eign influ­ence oper­a­tions rep­re­sents “col­lat­er­al damage.”


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